Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Worst cover story ever

It’s just the White House doing its part to be “better conservers.”
The White House has acknowledged recycling its backup computer tapes of e-mail before October 2003, raising the possibility that many electronic messages — including those pertaining to the CIA leak case — have been taped over and are gone forever.
Now we’re supposed to believe the White House recycles? That what was on those destroyed recycled tapes probably could have put a lot of key administration officials in prison for a long, long time is surely just a coincidence.

So now the administration has to deal with the reality of admitting that it violated the Presidential Records Act by allowing those tapes to be destroyed. But the blame for that can be assigned (I chose that word specifically because I believe it best reflects how the Bush administration handles these sort of things) to some low-level administrator or technical assistant — hey, perhaps even to an outside IT contractor hired to preserve those records! Yeah!

You don’t think George Bush is going to take the blame for illegal activity taking place in what is alleged to be his White House, do you? He's 61 years old and has made it this far through life without taking responsibility for anything. Why whould he start now?

Violation of the Presidential Records Act is surely nothing compared with the charges George, Dick, Karl, Alberto, Harriet and God knows who else might face if those e-mails were to become public. Which is exactly why they won’t. The Bush administration is finally winding down and the track-covering has already begun. Executive order 13233 allows ex-presidents or their designees to seal that president’s records for any reason, for as long as they want. The CIA destroyed tapes that were said to depict its agents torturing detainees. This e-mail tape “recycling” program is just more of the same, another attempt by Bush to keep his records secret, just like he tried to do with his gubernatorial records in Texas. And you can expect to see it over and over, in nearly every federal agency this administration has fouled with its corrupt, incompetent cronies, until Januaury 20, 2009, when, mercifully, the door to the White House will close behind George Bush for the last time.

As a friend of mine likes to say, when you have nothing to hide, you hide nothing.

In the end, it’s just another interesting parallel between the failed administrations of George Bush and Richard Nixon. That tapes might lead to the downfall of both administrations makes perfect, poetic sense.

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